Summary: 7 May 2012, New York - Statement on behalf of the Member States of the European Union by H.E. Mr. Thomas Mayr-Harting, Head of the European Union Delegation to the United Nations, at the 66th Session of the General Assembly Second Resumed Session Fifth Committee Organisation of Work
I have the honour to speak on behalf of the Member States of the European Union.
The Acceding country Croatia*, the candidate countries Turkey, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia*, Montenegro*, Iceland** and Serbia*, the countries of the Stabilisation and Association Process and potential candidates Albania and Bosnia and Herzegovina, as well as Ukraine, the Republic of Moldova and Georgia, align themselves with this statement.
The Member States of the European Union actively support and participate in UN mandated peacekeeping operations and other relevant activities throughout the world, and contribute with troops, civilian police and other personnel.
We have always attached great importance to peacekeeping as a core task of the Organization and will continue to do what is necessary to ensure that UN peacekeeping is effective and serves the need of maintaining peace and security.
The peacekeeping activities of the United Nations have developed immensely over the last decade and remain an important priority for the Member States of the European Union. We would like to take this opportunity to commend the hard work and commitment of all UN personnel involved in the difficult task of peacekeeping. We also pay tribute to all those who have lost their lives while serving in a UN peacekeeping mission.
We intend to continue to demonstrate our commitment to effective peacekeeping during this session as well. As the largest collective financial contributors to the peacekeeping budget, the Member States of the European Union will also closely examine the budgets of all the peacekeeping missions, as well as the support functions, with a view to providing them with adequate financing to carry out their mandates.
The Secretary-General's proposed budgets for peacekeeping missions for the financial period 2012/2013 total $7.4 billion. The Member States of the European Union continue to be committed to providing the necessary resources for peacekeeping missions to fulfil their mandates. However, given the ongoing global economic crisis which has imposed financial constraints on UN Member States - not only in Europe -, strict budgetary discipline is required to ensure that resources are truly needed and used effectively, efficiently and in a transparent way.
The Member States of the European Union continue to support the implementation of the Global Field Support Strategy, and welcome the close involvement of the membership and relevant United Nations bodies in this process. We encourage the Secretariat to work to ensure that the strategy produces economies of scale and savings, as well as strengthened accountability and improved delivery of services on a global and regional basis for a more rapid and effective deployment of missions. As work continues on developing the strategy, it will be increasingly important to get a clearer picture of the impact of the strategy and its concrete results.
Finally, we would like to recall the importance we attach, as we believe do you, to taking decisions in this Committee by consensus. We believe that for the future good-functioning and reputation of this Committee, and for the covenant of good will among Member States on which the United Nations' essence and effectiveness depends, it is important that the General Assembly is able to unite in its decisions on the organisation's reform, management, funding and budgets. While many decisions require compromise, the credibility of any decision depends on its being reached by true consensus. Doing otherwise will undermine this Committee to the detriment of all.
To conclude, Mr. Chairman, let me reiterate that the Member States of the European Union are committed to working closely with all partners in a spirit of openness, transparency and constructive cooperation in order to reach decisions by consensus on all items on our agenda at the end of this second resumed session on 1st of June 2012.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.